Meal Plan for Footballer – Match Day

On a competitive level football training will typically be during the week, with a match at the weekend. The plan below assumes you're already having optimal nutrition for training during the week, see Meal Plan for Footballer – training day, and so is designed to provide adequate fuel for a match.

As well as good nutrition on the day itself, it is recommended that you have a higher than normal carbohydrate intake at all meals, after training on the day prior to the match. The plan below provides sufficient levels of all nutrients and sustained slow released low glycaemic carbohydrates to ensure optimal energy throughout two 45 minute half-times in a game of football. It also encourages good nutrition after the game, to ensure you're refuelled for training the next week.

The meal plan below is an example for a typical weekend match day; if you are playing during the week, adjust the plan appropriately:

Breakfast 7.30am
Large bowl of porridge made with jumbo oats + 200ml skimmed milk + water with a tsp of sugar and raisins if desired
or 75g unsweetened muesli + 250ml skimmed milk
250ml fresh fruit juice
4-5 oatcakes or rye crispbread with low fat soft cheese
Early lunch 12.00pm
100g chicken breast or 120g fish
70g basmati rice or 70g wholewheat pasta
Medium serving of vegetables / salad
Drink water
15 minutes before kick-off
1-2 oatcakes
100ml isotonic drink with 20g additional dextrose
Half time
1-2 oatcakes
100ml isotonic drink with 20g additional dextrose
Sip water
Immediately post match
25g whey protein powder + 25g dextrose in water
45 minutes later
Main Meal
Lean fillet steak or chicken breast or fish + herbs to taste
Boiled new potatoes or basmati rice or couscous or dry roasted sweet potatoes
Loads of vegetables
Low fat, no added sugar yoghurt
Evening snack
2-3 oatcakes with low fat soft cheese
100g mixed nuts & seeds
Item of fruit
1 hour pre-bed
100g cottage cheese / quark / low fat natural yoghurt
Small handful mixed nuts & seeds

However, the plan is merely a general guide, and portion sizes will need to be adapted to suit your daily routine. You must eat a variety of different meats/fish, complex carbohydrates, fruit and vegetables every day, and drink plenty of water.

Plans for people with illness or medical conditions in no way should override advice provided specifically for you by your doctor, clinical dietitian or other clinician. We advise that you seek the advice of a suitably qualified physician before commencing any exercise regime, following any dietary or nutritional regimen or beginning the use of any dietary supplements, legal or otherwise. The information provided on the Website is intended as information only and does not constitute advice. Therefore, it must not be relied on to assist in making or refraining from making a decision, or to assist in deciding on a course of action.